Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Interior Division Semi-Finals: Game 3 Vernon 2 Penticton 1

For anyone who could not attend or watch tonight’s Vipers game here are my thoughts and views from tonight’s game. You may agree or disagree but we all have our own view and opinion on any game we watch. This is my opinion and my thoughts on how I saw tonight’s game. I try to be unbiased and give a fare recap on both sides. Thanks for stopping by & visiting my blog.

I was at tonight's Game 3 of the Interior Division Semi-Finals as Vernon defeated Penticton 2-1 at Kal Tire Place.

Starting Goaltenders:

Vernon: Andrew Shortridge
Penticton: Anthony Brodeur

1st Period: The Vees got off to a quick start as Scott Conway with two good quality chances early. In the opening two minutes "AP" Carter Stephenson lost an edge, allowing Conway open ice to break in for the parcial breakaway couldn't beat Andrew Shortridge in close and just a few plays later Conway with a great individual effort beat Shortridge but hit the far post as the goal light come on and the play continued. On the play the Vees would get the games first powerplay. A short lived PP as Penticton would take a penalty of their own sending both teams to four on four before the Vipers would get a very shortened powerplay. The Vees would kill off the minor as both teams went back to five on five. The Vees jumped out to an early lead in the shot department, were outshooting Vernon 5-1 less then four minutes into the game. Both teams looked fairly even in the first ten minutes with not a lot of quality chances at either ends of the rink, other then Scott Conways two opportunities in the opening few minutes. Both teams stepped up the physical play early, laying out some good checks in the first half. Just before the halfway mark Ben Butcher's shot from the blueline would be redirected in front by Liam Finlay who forced Anthony Brodeur to make a tough save in close keeping this game scoreless. Three and a half minutes later Butcher would setup Finlay going to the net but once again Brodeur come up with a big save. Vernon slowly coming on, were getting lots of pucks to the net, seemed to be firing from everywhere as the Vipers took over the edge in play in the last five to six minutes. The Vipers moving the puck well, got some good pressure deep in the offensive zone, had the Vees hemmed in their own end for a solid two minutes or more but were held to the outside, didn't get many chances. With just over a minute remaining in the frame and Vernon getting a powerplay, Andrew Shortridge come out of his crease to play the puck, the puck landed right on a Vees stick, that stopped the play with the upcoming penalty. But the Vees player shot the puck into the open cage forcing a scrum along the side wall as both teams were mixing it up along the boards. After the scrum was broken up Scott Conway with a great opportunity down low, couldn't beat Andrew Shortridge inside the final minute. It was 0-0 after 20 minutes. Penticton with a strong start on the road, had two real good chances within the first few minutes couldn't open the scoring. Both teams looked fairly even in the first half, with the Vipers taking over the edge in play in the second half. Both teams with some quality chances, as both goaltenders played very well. Vernon outshot Penticton 15-9.

2nd Period: The Vees with a strong start, had several chances early inside the opening minute. Taylor Ward with atleast two maybe three cracks at the loose puck in front of the net, couldn't beat Vipers starting goaltender Andrew Shortridge who come up with some big saves early and often this period. Penticton jumped on the Vipers early and often had Vernon hemmed inside their own end, giving the Viper defence all kinds of trouble with a strong forecheck and potent attack. Easton Brodzinski and Owen Sillinger with good looks at the net, missed the net on two missed opportunities. Vees captain Tyson Jost with a quick shot from the high slot, couldn't beat the quick glove of Shortridge who made a big save off the Vees superstar forward. Shortridge was very busy for most of the period as it was all Penticton. A shot from the point was redirected in front by Nick Jones who looked to beat Andrew Shortridge but hit the crossbar as the puck stayed out. The Vees with all kinds of pressure were outshooting Vernon 12-3 just over four minutes into the 2nd period. Just less then five minutes in the Vipers would finally clear the zone, Jagger Williamson with a hard working shift, broke free to wheel in on a two on one attack, Williamson tried setting up former Penticton Vees forward Liam Finlay going to the net, but the puck hit Finlay or someone in front, as the puck went straight up in the air. A few players later a quick shot from the corner forced Vees starting goaltender Anthony Brodeur into coming across the crease to make a difficult save keeping this game scoreless. It was all Penticton in the first half. Early into the second half Jimmy Lambert with a nice stretch pass hit Odeen Tufto for the breakaway who went shortside beat Brodeur blocker side giving Vernon a 1-0 lead at 12:37 Lambert with the lone assist. Less then two minutes later the Vees would get their second and third powerplays of the evening after picking up back to back powerplays. Easton Brodzinski missed the net from a shot from the circle on the first man advantage as Penticton with not a lot of chances. The Vees had some pressure but were missing the net on a few shots. Andrew Shortridge was forced into making a few saves as the Vipers penalty kill was good, killed off both minors. Darren Rizzolo would leave the ice during the second penalty kill after taking a puck in the face off a shot from Scott Conway. Rizzolo would make his way to the dressing room, would return for the start of the 3rd period. Vernon was up 1-0 after 40 minutes of play. The Vees basically dominated the frame from start to finish. It was all Penticton as the Vees with a ton of pressure, had several quality opportunities couldn't beat Andrew Shortridge who was solid for the full twenty minutes. Shortridge was called apon to make several big stops, keeping his team in the game. If it wasn't for Shortridge this period, the Vees could have maybe jumped out to a big lead, heading into the 3rd. The Vipers with very little zone time/any real great chances were only able to get two maybe three quality opportunities of their own. Vernon struggled defensively forced lots of turnovers in that period. Anthony Brodeur wasn't tested much but was letting out some big rebounds that period. Penticton outshot Vernon 25-5.

3rd Period: For a third straight period, Penticton jumped on the Vipers getting a good start off the opening faceoff. Easton Brodzinski with a strong forecheck down low, was knocking guys off pucks like flies and Scott Conway skated through atleast three or four Vipers untouched before being stopped in close by Andrew Shortridge. Shortridge and the Vipers couldn't cover the puck before Conway went around the net before coming out the other side, putting the puck home into the open cage as several Vipers dove into the crease to try and stop the puck, as Penticton tied the game 1-1 at 0:44 Conway with a nice individual effort tied the game, Brodzinski & Dixon Bowen collected the helpers. A huge goal by the Vees inside the opening minute. Penticton looked good in the early few minutes, as Vernon struggled to get out of their own end. The Vipers would slowly pick up their game and come back with some hard shifts of their own. Just before the halfway mark, the Vipers would get just their second powerplay of the night but a strong penalty kill by the Vees, limited Vernon;s time and space as the Vipers struggled to get much of anything going with the man advantage. The Vees would kill off the minor. Just minutes after the PP Mac Ferner's point shot would miss the net, before Jagger Williamson buried the rebound off the back wall, gave Vernon a 2-1 lead at 12:03 Ferner and Bo Pellah picked up the helpers. From here on in, both teams went back and fourth with not a lot of any real great opportunities but lots of end to end rushes. With just over five minutes remaining Griffin Mendel found open ice, was able to walk in untouched before getting a quick low shot off from the circle was denied by Andrew Shortridge, who then had to recover in a hurry to make a big save off Owen Sillinger from the slot. On the same play-shift back come the Vipers on an odd man rush. Odeen Tufto setup Jimmy Lambert going hard to the net on a two on one couldn't beat a sprawling Anthony Brodeur who come across the blue paint to make his biggest save of the evening, keeping this a one goal game. Lambert scores here and this gives Vernon a 3-1 lead with five minutes to go. A few plays later the Vipers on another odd man rush tried going far side again, this time forced Brodeur into once again sprawling post to post to react for the save, looked to be very slot to get up as the play went back the other up ice. Brodeur was bent down in his crease, looked to be holding his groin and in some discomfort. Once the play stopped the referee skated towards the Vees netminder to see if he was ok. Brodeur would stay in the game and looked to shake whatever was wrong with him off. Penticton running out of time, slowly started to take over the edge in play in the final minutes, with the Vees pressing for the game tying goal. Andrew Shortridge had to be sharp, was forced into making atleast two big saves inside the final three minutes. Fred Harbinson and the Vees would call a late timeout, try and get Brodeur to the bench for the extra attacker, with Brodeur making his way to the bench, Jimmy Lambert with a long shot at the open net from centre ice was robbed after Brodeur turned around, made his way back to the crease before diving across the ice to get his stick out to stop the puck at a chance for the open net, making an unreal save to keep this a 2-1 game. Brodeur would eventually make his way to the bench, as the Vees with the extra man poured on the pressure. Brodeur would get looked at by the Vees trainer, before slowly making his way to the dressing room, didn't return to the bench. Vernon's defence held the Vees to the outside, hemmed Penticton's forwards along the end wall, ate a lot of valuable time off the clock, the Vees had two or three looks at the net, were unable to really get any quality chance before the Vipers would clear the zone, with just seconds remaining Mitch Brooks leaned over the Penticton bench to grab the puck just seconds before the final buzzer. As several Vipers skated over, wanting the game winning puck a minor scrum broke loose in front of the Vees bench, with lots of pushing and shoving, both teams were charged up with lots of emotions pouring over. Several Penticton players had to be held back by the coaching staff as tempers heated up at the buzzer. In the end I don't think Vernon did get the game winning puck, as the Vipers would hang on for the 2-1 win and get back in the series. Penticton leads the series 2-1. The Vees with another strong start to a period, come out of the gates early, tied the game inside the first minute after a hard working shift down low and in front. It looked like Penticton had the early momentum took it to the Vipers early, before both teams would settle down and looked fairly even for most of the period. A lot of play going back and fourth, with very few scoring chances at both ends of the rink. It wasn't until Jagger Williamson's game winner where both teams would get some good opportunities late in the period. Both teams worked-played very hard in the final twenty minutes. Penticton outshot Vernon 10-8.

Top Player's: (Vernon)

Mitchell Oliver I thought played fairly well on the Viper blueline. Really moved the puck out of the zone, and up ice well. Has really come on as the season has progressed, looked confident and calm out there tonight. 

Bo Pellah (1 assist) Saw a ton of ice time tonight, also played very well on the backend. Pellah who usally coughs up or turns over the puck often, played a good game.

Jagger Williamson (1 goal) Was pretty creative tonight, was skating well, created-generated a few Viper opportunities, scored the game winner off a lucky bounce-break midway through the 3rd period. Played hard, competed all night.

Hunter Zandee who played very well-looked very good in Sunday's Game 2 loss had another solid night tonight. Zandee showing lots of jump-energy in his game tonight, played hard, was skating, really forcing the play, was finishing his checks, was aggressive with and without the puck, on the Vees defence all night.

Liam Finlay who has played well this series, had another strong night this evening. Didn't pick up any points, but had a few chances. Was going to the net a lot, couldn't beat Anthony Brodeur in close.

Steven Jandric was another Viper forward who I thought played with a lot of jump, was aggressive on the attack, finished his checks, battled and played hard through out the game.

Mac Ferner (1 assist) Other then taking a dumb penalty late in the 1st period, played well defensively, made a few big defensive plays to break up a Penticton scoring play.

Andrew Shortridge (43 saves) Had a solid performance between the pipes in the victory. Shortridge picks up his first win vs Penticton in nine games was very strong through out the game. The veteran 20 yr old goaltender made his best saves of the night in the 2nd period, stopping all twenty five Vees shots. Shortridge who has been Vernon's MVP this season, needs to be this good if the Vipers have any chance at defeating the defending league champs.

Game Thought's: (Vernon)

The Vipers finally get the monkey off their back, beating the Vees for the first time this season, get their first win at home over Penticton since Game 4 of last years playoff matchup with Penticton. What an exciting game, no matter what team your cheering for. The Vipers played very well for two out of the three periods. Vernon with a very good 1st period, played very well held their own and more in a scoreless 1st. The Vipers were totally outplayed-dominated in that 2nd period, were outshot 25-5 but somehow managed to excape up 1-0 after some solid goaltending by Andrew Shortridge. In the 3rd it didn't look good early with Penticton tying the game just fourty four seconds into the final frame but give Vernon credit, they battled-competed hard, found a way to hang on for their first win over the Vees this season. The Vipers didn't give up a lot of shots or opportunities in the 3rd, were very good defensively. A huge win, in a almost must win situation. Penticton wins tonight and this series is basically over, the Vipers needed to get back in this series tonight, making tomorrow's game that much more important. I liked Vernon's penalty kill, sure they gave up some chances but for the most parts, did a fairly good job.

Top Player's: (Penticton)

Scott Conway (1 goal) Now has twenty two points in just nine games vs the Vipers this year. Conway has dominated the Vipers all season, only managed one goal after getting two great chances inside the first few minutes of the 1st period. I didn't think Conway stood out as much as he did in Games 1 & 2 but was still dangerous in the offensive zone. This kid always seems to find the open ice.

Easton Brodzinski (1 assist) Was a force down low, really used his size-weight and was hard to defend against on the forecheck. I thought had a strong night for the Vees. Had several good looks at the net, missed on a few but still was involved in the play, had some chances.

Taylor Ward had a fairly good night up front for Penticton, had some good chances early to start the 2nd period, played and battled hard through out the game.

Griffin Mendel had another strong night on the Vees blueline. I thought Mendel played very well in Game 2 was also just as good in Game 3.

Anthony Brodeur (26 saves) Suffers his first loss vs the Vipers this season, played very well. Didn't see as much action-rubber as Andrew Shortridge but still come up with the saves when needed. Made his biggest save of the night off Jimmy Lambert in the 3rd period on a Vernon odd man rush. I think this save is when Brodeur first got injured-or injured himself stretching out across the blue paint to make the sprawling save. Let out several rebounds tonight, was quick to recover back into position.

Game Thought's: (Penticton)

After taking the first two games of this series at home, the Vees will return home for a Game 5 Friday. Penticton falls to 8-1 against Vernon this season (Including regular season) just like the Vipers played-battled hard tonight. The Vees didn't get a lot of bounces-puck luck to go there way tonight, had their best opportunities in the 2nd period ran into a hot goaltender. Andrew Shortridge was solid-almost unbeatable made several huge saves keeping the Vees off the scoreboard in the middle frame. If not for the Vipers goaltender, this could have been a different score-outcome. Penticton wasn't clicking on the man advantage, missed the net often especially in that 2nd period, had some good looks but fired wide. The Vees defence was once again solid through out Games 1 & 2 and again tonight doing a great job at blocking shots, keeping Vernon to the outside, limiting the Vipers chances. Penticton outshot Vernon 44-28 but this game was much closer then going by the number of shots. This game could have easily gone either way, was very exciting and entertaining to watch. The referee's let both teams play, put away their whistles at times. A fairly decent turnout of Vees fans (20-25) made the trip to Kal Tire Place.



Brendan Barry (Injured)
Latrell Charleson (Injured)
Brett Stapley
Charley Michalowski (Injured)


Gabe Bast (Injured)
Colton Poolman (Injured)
Desi Burgart

Energy Player of the Game:

Steven Jandric
Three Stars:

1st Star: Andrew Shortridge ((43 saves)
2nd Star: Jagger Williamson (1 goal)
3rd Star: Scott Conway (1 goal)

BCHL Game Summary,

Fraser Rodgers Penticton Vees Blog,

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